The LANAP® protocol is a layer-based approach to gum disease using an Nd:YAG free running pulsed laser requiring specific knowledge and skills drawn from the whole dentistry. Our office is one of the first in the area to offer Laser Periodontal Therapy™ for the treatment of gingivitis and/or periodontitis.
We use the LANAP® protocol to treat gum disease to:
- remove only the diseased tissue without removing any of the healthy tissue
- maintain the height of the tissue around teeth
- minimize pain and discomfort to the patient
- get a closure of the periodontal pocket would allow healing to take place
Controlling periodontal disease makes it possible to save and restore otherwise hopeless teeth. To you, the patient, this means less pain, less bleeding, less swelling, less tissue removed, and less recovery time.
How It Works
Tartar, associated with inflamed and bleeding gums, is removed from the root surface of the tooth using an ultrasonic scaler and small instruments. Then, a small amount of light energy from a laser is directed through a tiny fiber, which is gently placed between the gum and tooth. This light energy removes a tiny amount of diseased tissue and aids in reducing the bacteria associated with the disease. After the area is thoroughly cleaned, the body can heal the area naturally.
Although the procedure itself can be virtually painless, we may anesthetize the area for the patient’s comfort. In this way we can precisely direct the laser for treatment. Post-procedure discomfort is typically minimal and of short duration.
Initial treatment is focused on scaling and the use of small instruments to remove the tartar. Then, the laser portion of the treatment is performed and normally only takes a few minutes. Depending on the severity of the patient’s periodontal disease, treatment may be accomplished in one office visit or in multiple visits. The estimated treatment time is reviewed with patients when we discuss their treatment plan.
- Perio probe indicates excessive pocket depth
- Laser light removes bacteria and diseased tissue
- Ultrasonic scaler and special hand instruments are used to remove root surface tartar
- Laser finishes cleaning pocket and aids in sealing the pocket closed so new germs cannot enter
- Healing of gums to clean root surface occurs
- Bite trauma is adjusted
- Healing occurs
Frequently Asked Questions & Answers
But my doctor said he’d have to pull my teeth because they are so loose and I don’t want to do that. Is there any way I can save them?
We have been able to save a lot of teeth that other dentists wanted to extract. We have had great success in saving teeth that were to be extracted. There is nothing better than your own natural teeth. We can schedule a consultation for you to discuss treatment.
I had x-rays a while ago. I don’t want to take them again. Can’t you look at those?
We can use them if they are not copies and they are less than 6 months old. The conditions of your mouth change rapidly, and in order to accurately diagnose you, we will need current x-rays.
How much more is the laser? I’ve been told by my Periodontist that it is expensive.
The laser is comparable to the fee for conventional periodontal surgery. It is not more because it is new technology. Our fee has actually been less than some of the offices using the conventional technique.
How will I feel after the laser surgery?
You may experience some ache, throbbing or soreness but most patients report feeling well after the surgery. The doctor will prescribe some antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory to take care of any discomfort you may experience.
How many appointments will I need?
Usually two treatment visits and a couple of post-operative visits. The doctor will then prescribe visits with a hygienist every three months to keep up what he has started.
Will my insurance cover this?
Typically we use the same billing codes as traditional gum surgery and the laser treatment is generally no more expensive than traditional surgery. There are other factors which may affect the cost, such as the severity of the periodontal disease, and how many teeth are involved. Many insurance plans pay only for a portion of this treatment. Patients should discuss their payment options with the dental office personnel as we offer financing for this treatment.
The dramatically increased comfort for our patients made the new system attractive to our office. We do encourage patients to take care of the need now to reduce further damage to their gums, teeth and bone.
Do you offer financing?
We offer Care Credit Financing. It is a credit card for medical as well as dental services. It is easy to qualify for and you can apply online.
How do I know this will work? I had surgery 4 years ago, and I now need it again.
The doctor can answer all of your questions regarding treatment. We offer a consultation so you can have all of your questions answered. You can meet the doctor and staff and have a demonstration of the laser performed for you.